The NRA in bed with leftest liberals… Yet again!

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An Open Letter To The Pro-gun Community 

Gun Owners of America 
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102, Springfield, VA 22151 
Phone: 703-321-8585 / FAX: 703-321-8408 
http://www.gunowners.org 

Thursday, October 4, 2007 

It may be a cliche, but it is true: This letter is written not in 
anger, but in sorrow and concern. It is written to our friends about 
NRA staff who, tragically, have taken a course which, we believe, 
would be disastrous for the Second Amendment and the pro-gun 
movement. 

Two of us are Life Members of the NRA -- one of whom was an NRA board 
member for over ten years. And our legislative counsel was a paid 
consultant for the NRA. 

So we certainly have no animus against the NRA staff, much less our 
wonderful friends who are NRA members. 

In fact, over the last thirty years, GOA and its staff have worked 
with NRA to facilitate most of our pro-gun victories -- from 
McClure-Volkmer to the death of post-Columbine gun control to a gun 
liability bill free of anti-gun "killer amendments." 

But those who staff the NRA, without consulting the membership, have 
now made a series of strange and dangerous alliances with the likes 
of Chuck Schumer, Carolyn McCarthy, and Pat Leahy. And we believe 
that, if allowed to continue, this will produce anti-gun policies 
which the NRA staff will bitterly regret. 

Christ said, in the Sermon on the Mount, that "by their fruits, ye 
shall know them." And, frankly, these fruits are not likely to 
produce much pro-gun legislation. 

Substantively, the Leahy/McCarthy/Schumer bill, which NRA's staff has 
vigorously supported without consulting with its membership, would 
rubber-stamp the illegal and non-statutory BATFE regulations which 
have already been used to strip gun rights from 110,000 veterans. It 
would also allow an anti-gun administration to turn over Americans' 
most private medical records to the federal instant check system 
without a court order. 

But perhaps even worse, the bill was hatched in secret, without 
hearings or testimony, and passed out of the House without even a 
roll call. And now, the sponsors are trying to do the same thing in 
the Senate -- in an effort to ram the bill through without votes or 
floor debate, led by anti-gun Senator Chuck Schumer. If it is good 
legislation, as its proponents claim, why such fears of a roll call 
vote or debate in committee? 

Indeed, in the face of horrific dissent from the NRA's own 
membership, its staff has tragically ignored arguments and dug in its 
heels -- in an almost "because-we-say-so" attitude. 

Understand this: 

* Passage of McCarthy/Leahy/Schumer will not quell the calls for gun 
control. To the contrary, it will embolden our enemies to push for 
the abolition of even more of our Second Amendment rights. Already, 
the Brady Campaign has indicated its intent to follow up this 
"victory" with a push for an effective ban on gun shows. 

* Passage of McCarthy/Leahy/Schumer will not be viewed as an "NRA 
victory." To the contrary, once the liberal media has used the NRA 
staff for its purposes, it will throw them away like a used Kleenex. 
Already, an over-confident press is crowing that this is the "first 
major gun control measure in over a decade." 

* Taking the BATFE's horrifically expansive unlawful regulations 
dealing with veterans' loss of gun rights and making them 
unchangeable congressionally-endorsed statutory law is NOT 
"maintaining the status quo." 

* We are told that the McCarthy/Leahy/Schumer bill should be passed 
because it contains special provisions to allow persons prohibited 
from owning guns to get their rights restored. But there is already 
such a provision in the law; it is 18 U.S.C. 925(c). And the reason 
why no one has been able to get their rights restored under CURRENT 
LAW is that funds for the system have been blocked by Chuck Schumer. 
It is no favor to gun owners for Chuck Schumer -- the man who has 
blocked funding for McClure-Volkmer's "relief from disability" 
provisions for 15 years -- to now offer to give us back a tepid 
version of the provisions of current law which he has tried so hard 
to destroy. 

Finally, there is the cost, which ranges from $1 billion in the 
cheapest draft to $5 billion -- to one bill which places no limits 
whatsoever on spending. Thus, we would be drastically increasing 
funding for gun control -- at a time when BATFE, which has done so 
much damage to the Second Amendment, should be punished, rather than 
rewarded. 

We would now respectfully ask the NRA staff to step back from a 
battle with its membership -- and to join with us in opposing 
McCarthy/Leahy/Schumer gun control, rather than supporting it. 

And, to our friends and NRA members, we would ask that you take this 
letter and pass it on to your friends and colleagues. 

Sincerely, 

Senator H.L. "Bill" Richardson (ret.) 
Founder and Chairman 

Larry Pratt 
Executive Director 

Michael E. Hammond 
Legislative Counsel

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